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48FW supports Swedish-led exercise

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A U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle assigned to the 48th Fighter Wing takes off from Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England in support of a bilateral exercise in Sweden, Nov. 3 2020. This Swedish-led exercise increases interoperability and enhances the 48th Fighter Wing’s ability to respond to threats in the Baltic Sea region alongside Swedish partners.(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jessi Monte)

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U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagles assigned to the 48th Fighter Wing taxi to the runway at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England in support of a bilateral exercise in Sweden, Nov. 3 2020. This Swedish-led exercise increases interoperability and enhances the 48th Fighter Wing’s ability to respond to threats in the Baltic Sea region alongside Swedish partners.(U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jessi Monte)

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A U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle assigned to the 48th Fighter Wing lands at Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England, after supporting a bilateral exercise in Sweden, Nov. 2 2020. This Swedish-led exercise increases interoperability and enhances the 48th Fighter Wing’s ability to respond to threats in the Baltic Sea region alongside Swedish partners. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jessi Monte)

ROYAL AIR FORCE LAKENHEATH, England -- Four F-15E Strike Eagles assigned to the 494th Fighter Squadron are supporting U.S. and Swedish special operations forces in a bilateral exercise, Nov. 12-18, 2020.

This Swedish-led exercise increases interoperability and enhances the 48th Fighter Wing’s ability to respond to threats in the Baltic Sea region alongside Swedish partners.

“This goes a long way to show the strength of our relationship and the capacity to operate together in support of stability in the Baltic region,” said Maj. Nate Wallace, the Wing’s lead mission planner for the exercise, from the 48th Operations Support Squadron. “For us, this was a fantastic opportunity to not only train with the Swedish Armed Forces, but to practice 21st century close air support by operating almost completely in the digital realm.”

The exercise will take place in various locations across Sweden, with special operations forces participating from both nations. The training will also feature an integration of conventional forces from both nations in land, air and maritime exercises.

“Our ability to project combat air power rests on strong cohesive partnerships, and we rely on these partnerships to conduct sustained operations in the Arctic and Nordic regions,” said Col. Sean Lowe, 48th Operations Group commander. “This week’s joint exercise leverages our forward presence in the Baltic Sea region allowing the Liberty Wing team to deepen our interoperability with the Swedish Air Force while sending a clear deterrence message to any adversary.”